By Matt Snyder
From South Africa:
I really want to write whatever it is that’s on my heart, but I’m having a hard time distinguishing between everything that’s flitting through it. I used to be able to write with such profoundness, with such an ability to discern what I needed to say or what I felt the Lord was prompting to say through me.
I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that I was in this system that I always saw as corrupt and failed that I was able to act very human towards it..
The Church in America.
And I was able to bash it and criticize it and call out all of its faults; yet unconsciously I was calling forth everything in my own life that was a wrong, that clashed with the image I thought that the Church was supposed to be (or everything I thought that a Christian should be). It’s sad that I used to be that way and in some of the recesses of my heart, still am.
Now that I’ve been removed from that environment for several months, it’s become harder and harder to trash-talk the body of Christ that I’m a part of and a lot easier to love it. My heart is breaking for the Church in the States just like it is breaking for myself.
I think I owe an apology to America. I realize that my words only go as far as my friends and family go because I’m not exactly the most popular guy in the blogosphere, although there is the occasional straggler who stops by once in awhile.
Everything that I write about the Church is a direct reflection of myself – or so I’ve come to realize. It’s just like we’ve done with God so many times, making Him in our image, only I’ve done it with the Church; I’ve made it into my likeness, which couldn’t be any farther from the truth or what should be done… maybe.
While I want my words to be somewhat prophetic, to call the Family back to our Papa’s feet, I don’t want them to be condemning either, which is exactly what I feel some of them have been. I desire to challenge you all, but I’m not eager to judge you. Judgment isn’t something I feel I’m entitled to.
But just like my brothers and sisters are capable of calling my focus back to Jesus’ face, I want to be able to do the same. I want to challenge you, the Church, to be God’s and not the world’s reflection of what being God’s should look like.
So I’m sorry. Even more so, I’m sorry to those that have been burned by the Church because of people like myself, people that only fuel the pollution in your heart towards Christ’s body. I plead for all of your forgiveness.
Papa, I pray that you shatter my heart for the Church, especially the family of followers/believers back in the States. Give me words to speak to those back home doing what they know best in how to serve You; may I be an encouragement, one who can give the Body the courage it needs to step out in faith. Papa, I don’t know what to pray for or what to write, but you know of my repentant heart and what it desires, to grab hold of me and change me, Father. Amen.
Matt is an ordinary radical who just finished an 11-month, 11-country pilgrimage around the globe with the World Race. In early January he’s moving to Port Huron, MI to work on staff with the same organization. Matt loves to see the Kingdom of God manifest itself in the most unlikely places through his own life. He loves Jesus and hopes that you do too.